Android First in Smartphone OS Market Share, Apple Top OEM

Google’s Android operating system (OS) led as the No. 1 smartphone platform with 51.5 percent platform market share, according to comScore.

smartphones and OEMs

Apple ranked as the top smartphone manufacturer with 42.4 percent OEM market share, up 1 percent from April, according to industry analyst comScore’s MobiLens and Mobile Metrix studies, which reported on key trends in the U.S. smartphone industry for July 2014.

Samsung ranked second with 28.4 percent market share (up 0.7 percentage points), followed by LG with 6.4 percent, Motorola with 5.7 percent and HTC with 4.7 percent.

Apple’s market share rose 1 percentage point from the three-month average started in April, while Samsung saw its market share rise 0.7 percent. LG, Motorola and HTC all experienced small declines.

Google’s Android operating system (OS) led as the No. 1 smartphone platform with 51.5 percent platform market share, while Facebook ranked as the top individual smartphone app.

Apple took second place in the smartphone OS market share ranking with 42.4 percent, while Microsoft placed third with 3.6 percent (up 0.3 percentage points), BlackBerry with 2.3 percent and Symbian with 0.1 percent.

Facebook—recently valued at $200 billion--reached 71.6 percent of the app audience, followed by YouTube (53.7 percent), Google Play (51.7 percent) and Google Search (47.5 percent).

The report found 173 million people in the U.S. owned smartphones (71.8 percent mobile market penetration) during the three months ending in July, up 3 percent since April.

The research firm’s rankings debuted the Friday before Apple took the wraps off its highly anticipated new versions of the iPhone, which will now come in two sizes, a 4.7-inch display model and a much larger 5.5-inch iPhone Plus that will target the "phablet" devices offered by many of Apple’s competitors.

The new handsets face challenging launch conditions as it responds to the global growth of a device type as combination of smartphone and tablet, according to a study by market research agency TNS.

In the TNS study of more than 55,000 Internet users worldwide, the firm found that large screen phones have soared in popularity worldwide.

In Asian markets such as South Korea, Hong Kong, Taiwan and Singapore phablets already comprise more than 30 percent of all smartphones.Samsung is currently by far the most dominant force in the large-screen display smartphone market, with an average of 25 percent of smartphone market share globally, according to IT research firm IDC.

A recent NPD Group report found smartphones with screens 4.7 inches and larger are also commanding more shelf space and unit share in the United States.

According to the study, U.S. nationwide carriers devoted about one-third of their shelf space to devices with a 4.7 inch or larger screen in the second quarter of this year, up from just 4 percent in 2012's second quarter.

Stephen Baker, vice president of industry analysis at NPD, told eWEEK Apple’s strategy of offering iPhones with larger displays is a smart move.

"Already about 50 percent of the non-Apple sales in the U.S. are above 4.7 inches, so there is clearly demand, he said. With Apple releasing something in the increasingly most important part of the market, they are likely to pick up share and force the rest of the industry to innovate to catch them."